The shortest path to great video? Lighting. Forget the silly little ring lights, a well lit webcam video will smoke a poorly list DSLR video! Where to start? I'll show you how to do it on the cheap, and make the most of what you already have.
- Desk LED Ring Light 10.2" With Stand ($13)
- Neewer 2-Pack Dimmable 5600k USB LED ($38)
- Elgato Key Light ($150)
- Amaran 100D ($200)
- Amaran 100X ($250)
No software in this one.
I've got a lot of natural light. Do I even need lighting hardware? The main upside to still buying lights is you can take control of the light, rather than be subject to whatever's happening outside. For quite a while I only used natural light, but getting into fall & winter it drove me nuts when the sun went down late afternoon.
I've already got a lamp on my desk. Could I use that? Yes! Depending on how powerful the bulb is, it's a good place to start. Pay attention to the kelvin rating of the bulb to ensure the light isn't too blue, or too yellow.
I feel ridiculous shopping for lights. That's completely natural. If you, like me, wanted a more macho option consider using a lamp on your desk, and square LEDs instead of ring lights.
Why did you link to a ring light if you think they're useless? In certain situations, for example, if you're going to be very close to the light, they're still better than nothing. If you're in a room with a lot of natural light or more than 18" from your camera, they probably won't make a difference.
How do I get lights to stop reflecting in my glasses? A few tips:
- Move that light as far off-center as possible. Sometimes this isn't feasible.
- The larger the light source, the better. This is a reason I don't like ring lights, it's a very focused light source.
- Find a way to diffuse the light. This can be as simple as taping a translucent sheet over your light or bouncing it off a white wall or foam board. Amazon search for 'light diffuser'.